HAPPY NEW YEAR! We are officially in the year of 2018. I hope with the fresh energy that the new year has brought, you are just as excited and would want to make 2018 the best year yet. Today I am going to share with you the 5 questions that I have come across while watching Lavendaire and thought they would make a great New Year post to answer them myself and share with you as well. Since Style & Senses is a fashion blog, I want to emphasize this post as my style evolution in the year of 2017 as I am going to pull out some of my favorite outfit photos in my Media Library and share them with you in the monthly manner. Feel free to go through your camera roll or write down anything you want to remember or highlight the topics of your choice. So take a pen and your journal or a piece of paper and start jotting down your answer. Shall we begin?

// 5 Questions to Reflect & Plan for the New Year

Questions are in courtesy of Lavendaire, you can find her video, here

1. What were my highlights of 2017? (Highlights can mean your accomplishments, special memories, significant changes in life, or any moments of joy that you want to remember.)


I was addicted to having my hair cut shorter and shorter. It was a blunt cut, so I enjoyed having it sleek and straight. I flew out to Seattle to spend the New Year with my boyfriend who just moved here in a month. As you might or might not know that I lived in Minnesota at the time. I got to explore Seattle, tried out some of the most popular restaurants and are still my favorites to date: Ba-Bar, The Walrus & The Carpenter, and Nishino.


Braving the cold winter days in Minnesota, I went out to shoot outfit contents per usual. My hair was getting longer, and I had some highlights added to the ends. February was my birthday month.


I went to Colorado with some of my best friends! I utilized the skill taught by my coworker and was able to ski down the mountain of Keystone. That took half of the day I’d say, and I had a blast!


My boyfriend flew in town to the Twin Cities couple times this month for work. As you might know by now, he shoots and edits the majority of my photos. Some were shot by my cousin though. At this time, I was not sure which direction that I wanted to go from style to the photography. These months were pretty much revolved around me realizing stuff, my fashion future, blogging, learning how to post and use hashtags as well as tagging brands on Instagram, etc.


With a new lens, my cousin and I were able to shoot and produce a better photo quality while he got more practice in shooting with a DSLR. I then uploaded the raw photos to Google Drive and had my boyfriend edited them. By this time around, I knew that I wanted to pursue this fashion thing seriously, and that required a lot of time, energy, and dedication. I realized that I was later to the blogging scene, but it was better late than never. So I kept learning and shooting and doing whatever I could to pursue this thing! Late May, I flew out to Seattle to see my boyfriend for the weekend. I got to experienced the crazy PNW rain, hiked the Rattlesnake Ledge, and witnessed the beautiful luscious green and flowers filled city. I also went to Las Vegas and had an amazing time with my girlfriends for a Bachelorette party.


My vision for my blog and Instagram became a lot clearer. I learned to pose and be better in front of the camera: hands in the hair, move less, and smile more often. I flew out to California for a weekend to see my boyfriend again. We spent a couple days in the South area of DTLA, went to Joshua Tree and Palm Springs, walked Santa Monia Pier and Venice beach. The whole state of California is so blessed with so many amazing sceneries as well as developed art and entertainment scene. I felt so inspired and recharged.


I attended 2/4 of the weddings this month. Oh, my hair got a bit longer and I had it bleached to its maximum capability. I enjoyed some lighter blonder moments while it lasted. I paid the price for it later on the year though. It indeed got a lot of breakages and frizzy untammed momments. I did not recommend! I also had to let it grow out at this point! I did a few brand collab this month which was very exciting. One of which I had a blast was to help coordianting the shoot with a local bag brand in the Twin Cities, here. I was also asked to write an article for a local fashion magazine, The Volk! Check out their Fall 2017 issue to find my article, titled ‘Style & Senses’ page 94, to read my fall back-to-school fashion advice with a personal twist to it, here!


I did a collab with Richmond & Finch, and you can see one of my ‘promo’ photo, here. I attended the third wedding of summer 2017, caught the bouquet, and danced the night away with all of my closest people in Minnesota. I decided to go back to black since my hair was too damaged before my trip to Hawaii mid-month. This time it was my boyfriend’s sister who got married. We flew to Maui and explored the island by ourselves for two days before joining everyone else in Honolulu for the wedding. It was the most stunning and intimate wedding I had ever attended. Hawaii was truly a paradise.


I quit my job and moved to Seattle mid-month. It was by far my biggest dream-come-true: a dream to move away from the midwest to a bigger city where eventually I’d find more like-minded-people and opportunities. The first two weeks starting a new life in Seattle was extremely tough. I was jobless, did not have a car, and did not have any family or friends by my side. My boyfriend, as always, was my biggest support. I invested the majority of the time in applying for jobs, and that was why I did not get to shoot a lot of content. I was very stressed and did not have any motivations to even dress up. At the end of September and October, I had a few friends coming to visit from Minnesota and was able to do some hikes (Discovery Park, Lake 22 & Goat Lake) before the cold hit, so that was something I looked forward to. I also found myself getting into cooking a lot which was quite therapeutic at the time. Oh, and I found so much joy window shopped and browsed for home furniture for our apartment. So stay tuned for the apartment tour on the blog soon!


I did a few more brand collabs with teeth whitening companies, Smile Brilliant here and Bianco Smile here. Beginning of the month was quite tough since my resume was on a few waiting lists. I had a few job/phone interviews and went into an in-person interview at a Biotech company in downtown Seattle the Friday before I flew out to Nebraska for Thanksgiving weekend. Also on the same day, I received another phone call from my current employer and had an initial phone interview scheduled on Monday after. I spent a week in Nebraska with my boyfriend’s family, learned about many of his childhood things and places, and also went to Kansas City, Missouri for a day. I accepted a job offer about a week after I got back to Seattle. We had our in-apartment studio setup and shot a few sessions at home. I seriously needed more practice with posing and facial expression. I was pretty stiff. Send help, please!


Winter in the West coast is exceptionally nice. I had no reasons to complain. I made it to Portland and spent a few hours at Cannon beach, an hour east of downtown Portland. The food scence is Portland, though, blew my mind and tastebud. I came back on Sunday and started my job the Monday after. I learned a lot at work and felt like I was back in school all over again. The commute took a bit of time and some trials, but I adjusted to that pretty fast. I learned to appreciate taking the bus and the convenience of working downtown. The entire month was dedicated to the new job, but I, of course, did not forget to have fun and submerged in the festive holiday spirit. I also had an ‘ah hah’ moment with my Instagram-aesthetic-vision, and I have been receiving good feedback this month. So I knew it would have to stick with it and kept on making that vision clearer and better than ever before. Life felt like it all made sense!

And yay, we are all caught up! So let’s continue with the rest of the questions, hope you don’t forget to continue writing things down at this point!

2. What about 2017 am I most grateful for? (List out anything that comes in your mind and reflect on the past year)

Moving to the west coast was definitely one thing I was glad that I did this entire year of 2017. As I mentioned earlier about me having many realizing moments to make blogging a serious thing, I am grateful for having this blog as a creative outlet, a personal journal but publically shared, and the opportunities to meet people and work with new brands. I am grateful for having a new job, a new place to call home, a new city to live in that I can see and feel the potentials and opportunities. I am grateful for having this freedom to do and create. I thank you for reading, commenting, and liking the contents that I have put out!

3. What is my theme for 2018? (It can be a word or a phrase that you want to accomplish in a year.)

My theme for the blog this new year would have to be ‘making more conscious decisions’ in purchasing fashion items, buying things from brands that I know where the stuff comes or is made from. I would love to start linking items or products featured in the blog post so that you can easily purchase and own them as well. And of course, I cannot wait to travel more and share more food, sceneries, and people I meet along this blogging journey. It is going to be another amazing year!

4. How do I want to evolve & grow in 2018? (Put on your dreamer hat, what difference you want to make in your life?)

Personally, I want to start saving more, so my plan is to put a certain amount of money away each paycheck and keep track of my spendings this year. For Style & Senses, of course, I would love to meet more people, especially local creative individuals and groups here in Seattle, do collabs or take on fun projects along the way. What about you?

5. What areas do I want to focus on? (And ask yourself what are your goals in those areas? We cannot multitask and accomplish all things at once, but listing out specific goals, deadlines, and try to quantify your goals by breaking them out into actionable steps. And the put in the work and check off the list as you go!)

Mine would look something like this:


  • wake up early, get up to make coffee or tea in the morning, go for a walk or gym
  • save more money: deposit a set amount of money per paycheck and only withdraw in emergency situations
  • read more, like reading 10 pages a day is better than a set number of books to read per year
  • learn new skills or take classes: swimming, wine class, yoga
  • reach out to reconnect with old friends, ask how they are doing
  • call home more often
  • hit the gym at least 3 times a week
  • take care of my skin and grow out my hair
  • drink more water
  • smile more


  • buy fewer junks/knick-knacks
  • invest in good quality pieces: clothes, shoes, bags, etc
  • be more conscious in buying things
  • reach out to more social media accounts by commenting and compliments their work more
  • connect with other bloggers IRL, possibly!?
  • experiment with different outfit pairings (out of my comfort zone)
  • wear more jewelry and accessories
  • create or make ‘something’ to sell! I do have a few ideas in mind, so we will see!

SHARE YOU LISTS IN THE COMMENT SECTION! Have fun and remember to WRITE MORE! To me, this is just the beginning of everything. I hope you won’t stop or won’t ever call it quit! Make youre 2018 a year of yeses! Below are some of my most favorite quotes to live to set the new year intentions, so feel free to copy them in your journal to screenshot to save it somewhere…

In the end, she became

more than what she expected.

She became the journey,

and like all journeys,

she did not end, she just

simply changed directions

and kept going.

r.m drake


The woman

you’re becoming

will cost you people,

relationships, spaces, and

material things.

Choose her over everything.


Someday we will find

what we are looking for.

or maybe not

maybe we’ll find something

much greater than that.


oh, the heartbreakingly beautiful tender weight of being human.


stay close to people who feel like sunlight


love like you’ve never been hurt before.

stay inspired | as always

An Trieu